Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder

Whay is Passive aggressive  Behaviour?

Passive aggressive is a behaviour of expressing one’s negative feeling in an indirect way. The behaviour that classifies to be passive-aggressive are those which involve acting indirectly aggressive rather than directly aggressive. The people with Passive-aggressive disorder regularly exhibit resistance to requests or demands from their family and other individuals. They tend to be emotionally cold, procrastinate a lot and have a habit of displaying negative traits.

History: Passive Aggressive Personality Disorder

The history of passive-aggressive disorder reveals many things about the American psychiatry including how one should use and the diagnostic criteria of the disorder that has changed in the recent years. This disorder is useful test for establishing better categories in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) . The DSM is a recognized book for the diagnosis of mental disorders.

Passive-aggressive personality disorder is a chronic, generally inflexible, condition.

The diagnosis of PAPD is not medical problem. Over time the passive aggression has been considered to be a:

  • Personality trait
  • Dynamic behavior pattern
  • Personality syndrome

The causes that come out to be of PAPD are:

When a child in in his adolescent years a moderate amount to resistance to others, especially to the authorities, tend to develop naturally and subside over time.

There are many researches done that show the causes of PAPD that might be a combination of the things listed below:

  • Genetics: If PAPD is running in the family most likely it is desired to happen to the people of the same bloodline.
  • Growing up in an abusive environment or where there was substance abuse: The families that have an unhealthy environment where the parents do not listen to them or they deal with a set of authoritative parents. There might be possibilities of PAPD. If the people have a history of substance abuse or they actively smoke or get indulge into any other behavior they might result in having a passive aggressive behaviour which might turn into passive aggressive disorder.
  • Being punished as a child for expressing anger or negative emotions or opposing thoughts and feelings: If a child is punished for expressing his or her anger, negative emotions or opposing feelings or thoughts in his young years and not able to accept him freely. Not  accepting the negative emotions. Just acknowledging the positive part. Correcting him when he cried are the roots of passive aggressive disorder.
  • Not having learnt how to assert oneself in the childhood: If a child does not know how to assert himself in the childhood then it might result into him being passive aggressive in his adulthood or near adolescence.
  • Disruptions in child’s relationship to authority figures, such as parents, teachers, siblings or initial caretakers: If the relationship of the child is disrupted in the initial years of his grooming then it might be a serious cause for him to develop passive aggressive behaviour.


Symptoms: Passive Aggressive Personality Disorder

The people who have PAPD tend to have a disconnect in what they say and what they do, here is a list of some symptoms:

  • Not able to complete the task a person volunteered for or do something that a person wished to do.
  • Intentionally making mistakes or missing deadlines for projects in school ,college, etc.
  • Purposefully not showing up for meetings, appointments, social events, etc.
  • Acting excessively stubborn.
  • Intentionally misplacing the important documents of office, project, travel, medical appointments etc.
  • Excessively complaining about the personal misfortune and being undervalued.
  • Being argumentative
  • Acting cold or vindictive towards others without explaining the reason.
  • Blaming other people of their own feelings and actions.


Examples of Passive Aggressive Personality Disorder

The people with passive aggressive personality disorder might not attend many people. He or she may express dislike or anger in meeting   people. In many cases the people with PAPD repeatedly claim that they are not mad at them or they are fine even when they are apparently furious and not okay.  Denying their feelings and not being okay, being emotionally shut down further communicating and discussing the issue the classic behaviors of people with passive aggressive personality.

Deliberately procrastinating and delaying any opportunity that comes their way not willing do the tasks are also characteristics of people with passive aggressive personality disorder.


Dignosis: Passive Aggressive Personality Disorder

PAPD is not a medical condition hereby there no specific way we can diagnose it.

To come up with the diagnosis the researchers have used questions and to the response the understanding of PAPD:

  • Perceived general personality traits and behaviors.
  • Characterization of daily life interactions and relationships and the roles.
  • Level of emotional awareness.
  • Past or current interpersonal conflicts.
  • Feelings of hopelessness.
  • Suicidal thoughts.
  • Social cognition or awareness.

The passive aggressive behavior can be destructive, but therefore we all tend to respond in such ways at some time or the other in our lives. With better understanding of what causes it and how are the symptoms we can easily take care of the suffering from it by talking to them and providing them with a better environment for their grooming.

If the behavior is beyond our control we can take them to a known professional the field of mental health. As parents we can observe the behavior of our kid and start acknowledge every emotion that the child wants to express since the very beginning to avoid the problems later.

As grown up adults if we are familiar with the disorder and are experiencing the same we should try to know our behavior and push ourselves into doing the things such as meeting our deadlines and doing the concerned task. The people with PAPD have basic mood swings and personality disorder.

They often tend to get aggressive and not come out as emotionally open. We should learn about it and help the people to come out of it. We should that we as individuals can do to help them, on the ground level be it in schools, colleges at office etc. This is the utmost we can do the people suffering from PAPD.

What do you think?

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Written by Taru Dixit

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